The COVID-19 virus is a big enough threat on its own. Combined with the spread of fake news and mass hysteria, though? It becomes an even bigger danger.
That said, it’s important to be wary of any social media posts or memes you or people you know (most especially your elderly relatives on Viber chat groups) come across online.
One viral post currently making the rounds is an image of someone—perhaps a healthcare worker or local government unit (LGU) staffer—using what is supposedly a Bosch thermal scanner to detect someone’s temperature. Attached to this image is a statement from the engineering firm explicitly saying its thermal scanners cannot be used to detect human body temperature. Look:
So, it this post legitimate? While we’ve yet to determine when the image of the person being scanned was taken or what brand of scanner is being used, the statement by Bosch is real (albeit released way before the coronavirus scare reached its current heights in the Philippines). Look:
“Because of the current outbreak of novel coronavirus (NCOV), we are receiving multiple inquiries about the application of our thermal detector tools (GTC 400C, GIS 1000C) for human body temperature,” the statement reads.
“Please be informed that our tools are designed only for industrial usage, not for human or animal application. This is also stated in the manual: ‘The measuring tool must not be used for temperature measurement on persons and animals or for other medical purposes.’”
The company goes on to say it will not be held accountable for any use of its product outside its intended purpose.
We certainly hope no LGUs went out and bought a handful of Bosch thermals scanners without consulting someone who knows about the products. The Bosch GIS 1000C costs around P26,000 per unit, while the GTC 400C carries a whopping P71,000 price tag.
Lesson? It’s important to read the product manual.